Tuesday, June 17, 2008

For Olympics, China Ramps Up Copyright Infringement Campaign

June 16, 2008, 3:53 pm
For Olympics, China Ramps Up Copyright Infringement Campaign

By Flora Zhang
Olympics 2008: The Issues

When it comes to copyrights, China is perhaps better known for violations than for protection, as demonstrated by a steady flow of fake Harry Potter books in its market last year and a lawsuit filed by Gucci recently. For the Olympics, China is charting an active stance. Xinhua news agency reported that the country has started a campaign to crackdown on online intellectual copyright infringement of Olympic-related events and activities — particularly video-sharing.

“We will also mobilize online authors and the public to cooperate in this movement,” said Xu Chao, a senior official with the National Copyright Administration. “They can report alleged infringement cases via telephone hot line or the Internet.”

The hotline, 12312, will be in operation during the games to take in reports of infringement cases from citizens.

While the focus of the crackdown will be on video-sharing Web sites (see article in Chinese), it remains to be seen whether reining in Olympic-related materials will be an easy task.

On YouTube, a search for Olympic terms turns up plenty of hits that feature the official mascots or slogan, including the following animated Fuwa (福娃) video that serves as a promotional boon for China’s Olympic effort.

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